Home / View Point / Guest Columns / Motion quashed: Anand absent, Sturge and Ramdeen capitulate in Law meeting

Motion quashed: Anand absent, Sturge and Ramdeen capitulate in Law meeting

Former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan was a no-show while UNC Senators Wayne Sturge and Gerald Ramdeen refused to defend their own requisition, as a no confidence motion in Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) president Reginald Armour SC and vice-president Gerry Brooks came to a crushing defeat at a special general meeting today at the Hall of Justice’s Convocation Hall at Knox Street, Port of Spain.

Photo: Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) president Reginald Armour SC (centre) meets and greets at the Transparency Institute anti-corruption conference on 8 March 2016. (Copyright Shaun Rambaran/forge.co.tt)
Photo: Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) president Reginald Armour SC (centre) meets and greets at the Transparency Institute anti-corruption conference on 8 March 2016.
(Copyright Shaun Rambaran/forge.co.tt)

In the end, the proposed no confidence motion did not even go to a vote as, bizarrely, Sturge and Ramdeen refused to defend the requisition. The meeting was chaired by Elton Prescott SC, who was asked to do so by Armour with the agreement of the general membership.

“When you call for a meeting and the meeting is convened, it is your legal responsibility to stand up and move a motion for the vote to be put to the floor,” Armour told Wired868. “Three times, Prescott called on the people who requisitioned the meeting to move [the motion] and, although Sturge and Ramdeen were there, they did not speak up or say a single word to support it in front of their peers.

“I found that remarkable.”

Armour’s recollection of the special general meeting, which was attended by over 250 LATT members, was affirmed by several other attorneys who attended including Keith Scotland.

“I attended and, when it was asked who will be there to defend the nemesis of the petition, no one spoke,” said Scotland.

Instead, attorneys Ravi Rajcoomar and Makeda Browne-Alfred addressed the gathering and claimed that they were misled into signing the requisition.

Photo: Former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan failed to show up to defend his requisition.
Photo: Former Attorney General Anand Ramlogan failed to show up to defend his requisition.

Twelve of the initial 30 attorneys who requested the special general meeting subsequently claimed they were duped into affixing their signatures on the requisition document.

A joint statement by seven such attorneys, including UNC legal advisor and former MP Collin Partap, claimed:
“We were under the impression that we were signing a petition requisitioning a meeting of the Law Association to discuss matters relating to the Strategic Services Agency (Amendment) Bill 2016…”

Prescott asked if anyone who had not withdrawn from the requisition wished to explain what happened. Again, Sturge, Ramdeen and the remaining attorneys present stayed silent.

The 17 attorneys who did not officially distance themselves from the requisition were:

Wayne Sturge, Alexia Romero, Joseph Sookoo, Danielle Rampersad, Kevin Lewis, Shirvani Ramkissoon, Abigail Roach-Thomas, Shanice Edwards, Jonathan Bhagan, Devesh Ramdeo, Jennifer Rogers, Alvin Pariagsingh, Jayanti Lutchmedial, Anand Ramlogan, Kent Samlal, Douglas Bayley and Gerald Ian Ramdeen.

It is uncertain how many of the dissident attorneys showed up today. Former UNC Senator Robin Montano, who was one of the signatories and instigators of the requisition, is not a financial member of the LATT and could not attend.

Photo: UNC Senator and attorney Gerald Ramdeen. (Copyright Trinidad Guardian)
Photo: UNC Senator and attorney Gerald Ramdeen.
(Copyright Trinidad Guardian)

“[Sturge and Ramdeen] never stood up and they never contributed to the debate,” said Armour. “The entire debate, which was for about an hour, was about the people who said they were misled and that the meeting should go no further. Because the meeting was called on an improper basis.

“Ramlogan did not turn up, Montano could not and, in front of their peers, Sturge and Ramdeen hid.”

Sturge might have saved his voice for the television cameras, as, after the meeting, he tried to convince the media as to why his party—and not Armour and Brooks—was victorious.

“We won before we started,” Sturge told TV6, “because we embarrassed them into action.”

Sturge told the media that the attorneys who withdrew from the requisition had capitulated. It was a claim that he apparently did not make in front of their peers.

Armour suggested that it was Sturge and Ramdeen who wilted in the face of public scrutiny.

“My take on what happened today is that the leaders of the requisition, who are Montano, Ramlogan, Sturge and Ramdeen, I think they imagined that they would come out with a block of 35 lawyers. They did not expect to be exposed.

“From the very first day when we published the motion [in the Trinidad Guardian newspaper], we began to get letters from attorneys that they were withdrawing. I think Sturge miscalled this badly.”

Photo: UNC Senator and attorney Wayne Sturge.
Photo: UNC Senator and attorney Wayne Sturge.

Armour said it was possible that there might be a case of misconduct in the manner that the requisition failed and, in particular, the complaints from attorneys who claimed they were misled. However, the LATT president insisted that he did not intend to “scaremonger” and would not get ahead of himself on the matter.

Armour defended the work of the law body, which relies on voluntary workers, in providing benefits to the profession, the public and attorneys.

“We have many responsibility and we work as hard as we can with voluntary help.

We review legislation and we send in reports to the relevant people—on legislation including trademark, whistleblower, conveyance, title deed reform and so on.

“We have bench bar meetings with the Chief Justice and the judiciary to bring to their attention problems that lawyers are having or issues that we can help with. And we also deal with benefits for lawyers such as health insurance for members…

“Section five of the Legal Profession Act deals with our mandate to protect the rule of law… [And] we have a very active disciplinary committee, which is split into two divisions chaired by Gilbert Peterson SC and Marcelle Ferdinand.

“Every week, they sit on matters in which people are complaining on litigants. They do that every day.”

Photo: Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago vice-president Gerry Brooks. (Copyright NGC)
Photo: Law Association of Trinidad and Tobago vice-president Gerry Brooks.
(Copyright NGC)

Today, the general membership of the Law Association decided that Armour and Brooks had no case to answer and carried their full support.

Did local attorneys find the events at today’s special general meeting to be bizarre?

“I find nothing odd these days,” said Scotland, with a chuckle.

About Lasana Liburd

Lasana Liburd
Lasana Liburd is the managing director and chief editor at Wired868.com and a journalist with over 20 years experience at several Trinidad and Tobago and international publications including Play the Game, World Soccer, UK Guardian and the Trinidad Express.

Check Also

Daly Bread: Reflections of rudderless leadership in “old talk” and “blame game”

It ought to be becoming clear to all that the lame excuses which are offered …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

137 comments

  1. How could any competent lawyer seriously claim they signed something without reading it!

  2. Anand is a national disgrace ….. Wayne Stooge is an embarrassment to the Law Association ….

  3. Set fire and run . They should have known that using a wet box of matches and wet paper would not work .

  4. Dey just showing how everything under dem in power were contaminated. Time to put these ppl in jail.

  5. Jumbie’s First Law: “Just when you think dotishness cyah get worse, someone will come along to prove it can.”

  6. I’m just surprised to see Gerald Ramdeen take an interest in the living as opposed to profiting from the dead.

  7. These mischief makers learned nothing from their efforts of the recent past. Each time they try and they come up looking like crap. Crooked lawyers. I guess that they learned that not all lawyers belong to their “GANG” && and his minions,

  8. these people are such jokers. they need to be sitting in golden grove

  9. Joke of the day: Lawyers duped into signing documents. Only in Trinidad.

  10. They should be thrown out of the association

  11. Will the REAL ISSUE remain under the carpet ?……………the REAL ISSUE being …………the Law Association being a HAVEN for BANDITS who USES pens rather than guns to CARRY OUT their ROBBERIES………….and…………UNLIKE the Police Service who created a Professional Standards Bureau to both deal with CORRUPT MEMBERS and RESTORE PUBLIC CONFIDENCE…… the Law Association seems to ADOPT the POSITION that once you have entered their association then you automatically gains IMMUNITY for WRONG DOING………………… speaking from PERSONAL EXPERIENCE…………..it is 5 years that the Legal Departments of both WASA and TTEC have and continue to be in VIOLATION of the F.O.I.A……………no RESPECT for the law

    • and the Legal Department of PSAEL cannot be left out !……the Legal Department at PSAEL has been and remains a place of STRONG CORRUPTION STENCH…….the Legal Department at PSAEL makes a STRONG CASE for the F.O.I.A to be EXPANDED……………….and the whole CORRUPT CREATION of PSAEL needs be looked into……..Boards of PSAEL / Caroni and other HUGE State asset holders SHOULD be the REMIT of His Excellency the President to NAME……………..as they are ASSETS of the STATE and not of the Government

    • Ursus Daniel lots of people dont know about PSAEL and how reality is so different to itd original intention. A real political toy

  12. Bunch of idiots. No confidence motion BS

  13. i guess money cannot buy everybody….. lol…….

  14. Little boys in Big People party. Made complete fools of themselves.

  15. Does the LATT have a professional Code of Ethics? If so, what penalty, if any, is there for a member breaching it? If the answers are no and none, then clearly it is an issue that needs to be examined.

  16. You think Anand chupid or wha??

  17. Gis Elle I was to tell you about this

  18. Well look thing, they all won (as usual) and law and order in the country has lost

  19. The nerve of these ppl eh! Tried to hijack The Law Association to make it another UNC weapon and don’t have the balls to stand up and defend it as soon as they see water more than flower. Then the biggest fraud of them all Anand, refuses to show up when he knew beforehand that his motion had no chance in hell, now that other attorneys called him out as having hoodwinked them into signing a letter that conveyed a different meaning to the reason they were to attend for. And to top it off, this piece of shit Wayne Sturge has the temerity to run to the media and said they embarrassed the Law Association into taking action. Really chupid man??!! Show me where the glass is half full, you stained UNC ‘ heh cloth’.

  20. Them fellas upsetting. Including the biggest rolling stone in Trinbago, Montano

  21. Great to see Anand hasn’t changed! Can always depend on talk without action from him.

  22. && failed to show? Obviously. In a game of chess you always send forth the pawns.

  23. the 3 stuges failed to show up, lol

  24. He has to have a twin. That level of DOTISHNESS cyar be in just one person.

  25. Who God bless, no man should ever curse….it shall reverse. #blindside

  26. That’s how they ran the country.

  27. Well yes pappy!! #cowardlyCONMEN

  28. Hahaha, he’s exactly right! I’m sure we are going to hear from Daly on this soon. Btw- is chalk, not cheese the man used to pelt.

  29. No show is as useful as a soup-sandwich. Steuuups

  30. According to the article not even Sturge or Ramdeen spoke on the motion they lead, but tonight on CNC3 News Sturge called his lawyer friends spineless for not moving the motion forward….something wrong with this guy….really he’s not to be taken serious…..“I attended and, when it was asked who will be there to defend the nemesis of the petition, no one spoke,” said Scotland.

  31. The mere fact that Mr Armour hinted at the possibility of disciplinary action in the way this requisition was handled indicates the level at which they effed up…. Imma bookmark this to make sure I never call on them 17 lawyers for ANYTHING.
    God forbid I have anything bad to call on a lawyer for.

  32. is it an admission of defeat ,or nonsensical tactical move or a blunder of monumental proportions , these over ambitious politicians so united in their dislike of any thing named or associated with the pnm,want to practice a scorched earth policy

  33. “not with a bang, but a whimper”

  34. Witless. Did I mention witless?

  35. Dumbass Sturge should have done his homework instead of thrashing black lives matter. Idiot

  36. Gutless, brainless wastes of space.

  37. Lasana should put on the armour of fate,hype and chastity and enter the fray.

  38. So why was Anand the Instigator absent? Was he in court somewhere in the world?

  39. “Section five of the Legal Profession Act deals with our mandate to protect the rule of law… [And] we have a very active disciplinary committee, which is split into two divisions chaired by Gilbert Peterson SC and Marcelle Ferdinand.”

    I had to laugh at this. Really?

  40. I not calling no names but I did always feel that how certain people need the cover of darkness to do what they does do best. Or the power of office…

    Without either, they are as prepared to face public scrutiny as a soucouyant is to brave the midday sun.